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Fox School accounting student earns top score on 2016 CPA exam in Pennsylvania

March 24, 2017 //

High-achieving students and alumni of the Master of Accountancy (MAcc) program at the Fox School of Business continue to outperform the competition with CPA pass rates well above the U.S. average. Continuing a record of signal performance, recent graduate Joseph T. Pickett is one of the top 15 scorers on the 2016 CPA exam in Pennsylvania.

The Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants released 2016 statistics from the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy and congratulated state examinees with top results in February 2017. The highest scores among Pennsylvania examinees are determined by combining individual scores on the four sections of the exam: Auditing and Attestation; Business Environment and Concepts; Financial Accounting and Reporting; and Regulation. In 2016, the top 15 scorers in Pennsylvania earned an average score of 95.25.

Pickett graduated from the Fox School MAcc program in September 2016 and the undergraduate accounting program in 2015. He is currently an audit associate at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

“Congratulations to Joseph on receiving such an impressive score. This accomplishment is a fitting return for all the hard work and commitment he dedicated to his studies and preparation for the CPA exam while in the Fox School one-year MAcc program,” said Sheri Risler, director of the Fox School MAcc program and professor of accounting practice. “The Department of Accounting is proud of the outstanding caliber of our graduates. Joseph’s high score is a testament to the quality of MAcc students and the merits of the program’s curriculum.”

Since the program’s launch in 2011, Fox School MAcc students who took the CPA exam passed at a rate of 70 percent—far in excess of average national pass rates of 45–55 percent. This year marked the second year in a row Fox School alumni were among the highest CPA exam scorers in Pennsylvania. Christopher Bohdan, Jr., MAcc ’15 and BBA ’14, and Boris Furer, MAcc ’15 and BBA ’14, earned top marks in 2015. Christopher is an audit associate at Deloitte and Boris is an audit associate at EY, both in Philadelphia.

During the three semesters of the MAcc program, students are provided with the tools to become both CPA-ready and career-ready. The 30-credit, full-time program includes built-in CPA exam review courses, as well as the Fox School’s top-tier job placement resources and partnerships with Big Four, national, and regional firms.

“The Fox School and the MAcc program prepared me very well for my career and the CPA exam by facilitating the development of my soft skills in addition to my technical accounting abilities. The MAcc program in particular is the perfect stepping stone towards success on the CPA exam, as each semester focuses on a particular portion of the exam,” said Joseph. “I would not be in the position I am today without the education I received at the Fox School and in the MAcc program.”

In 2016, the MAcc program demonstrated it’s the best place in the region to launch an accounting career and one of the leading programs in the United States, with a 96-percent job-placement rate and No. 1 ranking in Greater Philadelphia, according to the Public Accounting Report (PAR).